Local Heart, Global Soul

May 28, 2012

Waka, So Much More than a Canoe…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

In this part of Kiwidutch’s retrospective journal documenting her New Zealand adventures of December 2011 – January 2012,  we are at Waitangi, one of the most important places in New Zealand’s history.

The first thing I want to take a good look at is “Ngatokimatawhaorua” which is the name  given to this particular  huge  “waka taua” or war canoe.  (“waka” means canoe)

This particular waka is the longest of it’s type and was refurbished  for the 70th Anniversary of the Treaty Of Waitangi  in 2010 (the treaty itself was actually signed 100 years before that, but the commemoration of the day as a national event has only been taking place for the last 70 years or so)

The waka is made from the wood of the New Zealand Kauri tree using traditional building methods and can seat more than 80 paddlers.

It’s an amazing feat of design and apparently one of these boats in the hands of experienced paddlers can make 150- 200 kilometres a day in open sea.

It’s huge, it’s beautiful and it’s majestic. Let’s take a look…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)


  1. Oh my! This is such a beautiful carved canoe! Amazing! Thanks for sharing!

    Comment by kyle78234 — May 28, 2012 @ 1:25 am | Reply

    • It’s a massive canoe too… the carvers who did the restoration work on this are amongst the best… and it’s even more stunning in real life, up close. Sadly my photos really don’t do it justice.

      Comment by kiwidutch — May 29, 2012 @ 8:19 pm | Reply

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